Back at the end of January I replied to a post on Facebook from Church & State Wines. They were looking for people who would be interested in a blind tasting event. I wasn’t scheduled to work that day, so of course I quickly let them know that I was interested and available. Along with a couple of friends, I arrived at the tasting room on the Black Sage Bench in Oliver, not knowing all the details of what we would be doing, other than it would involve tasting some wine. As it turned out, we (along with about a dozen others) were attending the blending trials for a new line of wines from Church & State. John Pullen, Marketing Manager, and Jeff Del Nin, Winemaker, poured us five white wines and asked us to make some notes and come up with a score for each of the wines. Although all the wines were similar, one seemed better suited for food pairing, one seemed better for patio sipping, some had a little bit higher perceived sugar levels, some were lighter, crisper, and others were a little fuller. Next up were four red wines. Again, we made notes and came up with a score for each of the wines. They were all tasty blends, some better for aging with grippy tannins and great acidity, some ready for consumption sooner, with softer tannins and lush ripe fruit.
After everybody had listed their favourites of the whites and reds, Jeff spoke to what the blends were and John, along with his father Kim Pullen, Proprietor of Church & State, told us their plans for this new line of wines with higher production than their other wines (5000-7000 cases vs 200-1000 cases). They revealed a fun new label and talked about the process of creating this new brand. With the help of Brandever Marketing, the Lost Inhibitions brand was born. Each of the individual letters used to spell out the words on the labels was created and stitched out of fabric before being replicated digitally, in order to have many different colour options to create the phrases on the bottles; really the possibilities are endless when it comes to phrases for the bottle labels. Currently there are 96 different Lost Inhibitions labels, split into two different series: the Prude and the Lewd. As indicated by the names, the Prude is a bit more “G-rated”, whereas with the Lewd it’s “No Holds Barred”! There truly is a bottle for every occasion between friends.
The 2014 Lost Inhibitions White is a blend of 35.2% Viognier, 19.7% Gewurztraminer, 16.8% Sauv Blanc, 16.4% Chardonnay, 7.3% Riesling, 3% Orange Muscat, 1.6% Roussanne. It is a great patio-sipping, aromatic wine with pineapple, apricot, peach and hints of floral on the nose. It is slightly off-dry, with a nice balance of acidity, round mouthfeel and flavours of citrus, peach, apricot and a touch of spice.
The 2014 Lost Inhibitions Red is a blend of 51.7% Merlot, 30.6% Cabernet Franc, 13.6% Malbec, and 4.1% Petit Verdot. It is a deep ruby-purple colour with aromas of black cherry, cassis and plum. It is dry but has quite an intense fruitiness. It has ripe tannins and flavours of dark cherry, plum, dark berries, cocoa and espresso with a medium-plus finish.
For the price ($18 & $20 respectively) these are pretty solid BC wines; and they’re something to really have fun with! And you can give suggestions on future label phrases too. Share your stories and suggestions with the winery and your idea could land on the next vintage.
Note: All bottle shots and letter images are from Church & State Wines.